WHAT IS FIBROMYLAGIA
Fibromyalgia is a condition characterised by widespread body aches and pain. It is accompanied by other key symptoms such as fatigue, non restorative sleep cognitive problems and somatic complains.
The patient usually describes a history of generalised pain, a constant dull ache that spreads over the body lasting more than 3 months, and other general physical symptoms including fatigue, morning stiffness, sleep disorders, waking unrefreshed, and cognitive (memory or thought) problems where patient have difficulties to focus, pay attention, and concentrate on mental tasks. There are often other pain complains associated, which can includes muscle knots, headaches and cramps.
CAUSES OF FIBROMYALGIA
The cause of fibromyalgia is unknown.
It is a dysfunctional disorder caused by biologic responses to stress in individuals.
Very often, these patients have seen many physicians and could not get a diagnosis to their symptoms as the investigations performed are essentially
normal. They are stressed and drained both mentally and emotionally, often wondering if all the pain and symptoms are from their mind or own imagination.
SYMPTOMS OF FIBROMYALGIA
The characteristic symptoms of fibromyalgia (fatigue, non-refreshed sleep, cognitive problems and the extent of somatic symptoms reporting) are also taken into consideration using a symptom severity scale. It is also important during history taking to review the medications that the patient is on as some medications such as HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors, carbimazole, amiodarone and interferon can cause myopathies and arthralgia.